Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
Keep CounterPunch ad free. Support our annual fund drive today!

Rumor and Anger Mount in Libya



This observer was stunned late last week when during a meeting in a Maghreb country with three high ranking former Libyan officials, among hundreds currently in hiding, and some organizing, in countries bordering Libya, one of them, in all earnest,  asked me,   “Do you believe there be a counter revolution  soon in the “Jamarariya [state of the masses, ie Libya]?”

The reason I was so surprised is that I was about to ask my hosts that very question.  I was thinking that with all their security and serious-faced male visitors, some western, coming and going and whispering that the reported Libyan Liberation Front groups along the Seral might be making some progress after not hearing much about them recently.

Of course I have little idea if the much talked of  ‘Green Revolution’ is strong or could topple the current NATO created and imposed government.

Certainly many complaints  can be heard today in Libya about the do-nothing “non-government” that increasingly people in all walks of life are boldly complaining about.  What I have observed personally is that nearly all the reports on events in Libya on certain internet sites are false.   This was also the case during the summer months here in Libya when patently false claims about NATO using MAP 108 Spanish manufactured cluster bombs against civilian or loyalist military targets,  NATO using depleted uranium, or that 150,000 Libyan civilians were killed were posted as truth “from reliable sources inside Libya.”  Or additionally wild claims, for example, that Misrata and other areas were always in loyalist control and that the rebels were surrendering en masse and that NATO was admitting defeat the next day.

A couple of recent false claims include a much circulated report last week that: “There are green flags flying all over Zawia and the Green Revolution has captured the town!”  Quite by coincidence the evening I read that claim on the internet, I had just come from Sorman and while en route was given a tour of the battle sites from the July-August fighting in Zawia by NTC (Transitional National Council) checkpoint minders. We observed most the intense battle sites including the Gadhafi Hotel site and various other Zawia locations.  I observed approximately 35 captured government  tanks parked along the main road and still in working condition but there was not one Green (pro-Gadhafi) flag to be seen.  I had just come from a cemetery outside of Zabratha where is saw local police/militia removing green cloth swatches from graves of some who had died during the summer fighting. Green flags if they appear in Tripoli are quickly remove and replaced with the tricolor of the NTC.

There have also been wild reports that Saif al Islam has married a Zintan tribe woman and has been seen taking walks with his captors and that they are defecting to his leadership.  According to the military commander of the Zintan militia group holding Saif, this is also nonsense and he claimed that the Zintan “brigade”  (none of the groups here like being referred to as “militia “ these days) are not preventing Saif from seeing a lawyer but that the permission must come from the Ministry of Justice in Tripoli.  Specifically,  from Mr.  Abdul Aziz Hazaii, Chief of Investigations at the MJ and the gentleman from whom this observer is currently awaiting approval to visit 11 incarcerated individuals.

All of us know that misinformation and disinformation are common during armed conflicts, often politically motivated. But such grossly exaggerated and unsubstantiated claims and conspiracy theories only aid the aggressors, in this case, NATO.

There is clear and growing pro-Gadhafi political and military activity here and it is why NTC leader Mustapha Abdul Jalil, the other day warned against the Gadhafi children raising an insurrection.  Aisha Gadhafi, given Saif’s current incarceration, is perhaps the likely leader.

Every night more pro-Gadhafi graffiti appears on street walls, buildings and around Green (Martyrs Square).  Activists, and there appear to be more every day, assert that so far the NTC has not attacked them and they feel fairly free to speak  out and even organize.  It is anyone’s guess how long this situation will exist before a violent crackdown and open fighting.

It is difficult to gage the anti-NTC/ pro-Gadhafi mix and the extent to what extent each is propelling increasingly unpredictable event in Libya.

Yet, with the elimination of Muammar Gadhafi, which was NATO’s clear intention from March 19 when it took over the UNSCR 1973 campaign against Libya, NATO correctly concluded that without Gadhafi, any “Green counterrevolution” would be very difficult. That is what we are seeing today.


While the restive Libyan population appears to be rebelling against the NTC for a variety of reasons, today, the urinating by NATO forces on the bodies of Afghanis is dominating the news and discussions is this pious Muslim country.  NATO has already lost much of its claimed public relations boost following its Halloween night ending of the bombing.  One suspects that this is because of an accumulation of many more recently discovered cases of NATO bombing of civilians in Libya. The population today in Libya is increasingly furious because more and more cases are coming to light concerning the high numbers of children who have been killed by NATO.

In addition to the fury caused by the urinating GIs, NATO officials are being ridiculed for all their denials that their bombing missions here in Libya, numbering more than 11,000, caused civilians deaths and their claims that NATO forces conducted themselves according to  higher moral and military standards, and sometimes put themselves at risk to avoid civilian casualties. The claims remind some of a generation of similar ludicrous public relations campaign undertaken regularly by the Israeli government.

The signs from Libya are that this country remains volatile and that contrary to NATO claims that it put into place a “new democratic Libya” that the predictable next chapter is starting to unfold that may bring the end of the NTC before the coming June elections when it is scheduled to be replaced.

FRANKLIN LAMB in doing research in Libya and can be reached c/o

Franklin Lamb volunteers with the Lebanon, France, and USA based Meals for Syrian Refugee Children Lebanon (MSRCL) which seeks to provide hot nutritional meals to Syrian and other refugee children in Lebanon. He is reachable c/o

More articles by:

2016 Fund Drive
Smart. Fierce. Uncompromised. Support CounterPunch Now!

  • cp-store
  • donate paypal

CounterPunch Magazine


October 27, 2016
Paul Street
An Identity-Politicized Election and World Series Lakefront Liberals Can Love
Matthew Stevenson
Sex and the Presidential City
Jim Kavanagh
Tom Hayden’s Haunting
CJ Hopkins
The Pathologization of Dissent
Mike Merryman-Lotze
The Inherent Violence of Israel’s Gaza Blockade
Robert Fisk
Is Yemen Too Much for the World to Take?
Shamus Cooke
Stopping Hillary’s Coming War on Syria
Jan Oberg
Security Politics and the Closing of the Open Society
Ramzy Baroud
The War on UNESCO: Al-Aqsa Mosque is Palestinian and East Jerusalem is Illegally Occupied
Colin Todhunter
Lower Yields and Agropoisons: What is the Point of GM Mustard in India?
Norman Pollack
The Election: Does It Matter Who Wins?
Nyla Ali Khan
The Political and Cultural Richness of Kashmiriyat
Barbara Nimri Aziz
“It’s Only a Car!”
October 26, 2016
John W. Whitehead
A Deep State of Mind: America’s Shadow Government and Its Silent Coup
Eric Draitser
Dear Liberals: Trump is Right
Anthony Tarrant
On the Unbearable Lightness of Whiteness
Mark Weisbrot
The Most Dangerous Place in the World: US Pours in Money, as Blood Flows in Honduras
Chris Welzenbach
The Establishment and the Chattering Hack: a Response to Nicholas Lemann
Luke O'Brien
The Churchill Thing: Some Big Words About Trump and Some Other Chap
Sabia Rigby
In the “Jungle:” Report from the Refugee Camp in Calais, France
Linn Washington Jr.
Pot Decriminalization Yields $9-million in Savings for Philadelphia
Pepe Escobar
“America has lost” in the Philippines
Pauline Murphy
Political Feminism: the Legacy of Victoria Woodhull
Lizzie Maldonado
The Burdens of World War III
David Swanson
Slavery Was Abolished
Thomas Mountain
Preventing Cultural Genocide with the Mother Tongue Policy in Eritrea
Colin Todhunter
Agrochemicals And The Cesspool Of Corruption: Dr. Mason Writes To The US EPA
October 25, 2016
David Swanson
Halloween Is Coming, Vladimir Putin Isn’t
Hiroyuki Hamada
Fear Laundering: an Elaborate Psychological Diversion and Bid for Power
Priti Gulati Cox
President Obama: Before the Empire Falls, Free Leonard Peltier and Mumia Abu-Jamal
Kathy Deacon
Plus ça Change: Regime Change 1917-1920
Robin Goodman
Appetite for Destruction: America’s War Against Itself
Richard Moser
On Power, Privilege, and Passage: a Letter to My Nephew
Rev. William Alberts
The Epicenter of the Moral Universe is Our Common Humanity, Not Religion
Dan Bacher
Inspector General says Reclamation Wasted $32.2 Million on Klamath irrigators
David Mattson
A Recipe for Killing: the “Trust Us” Argument of State Grizzly Bear Managers
Derek Royden
The Tragedy in Yemen
Ralph Nader
Breaking Through Power: It’s Easier Than We Think
Norman Pollack
Centrist Fascism: Lurching Forward
Guillermo R. Gil
Cell to Cell Communication: On How to Become Governor of Puerto Rico
Mateo Pimentel
You, Me, and the Trolley Make Three
Cathy Breen
“Today Is One of the Heaviest Days of My Life”
October 24, 2016
John Steppling
The Unwoke: Sleepwalking into the Nightmare
Oscar Ortega
Clinton’s Troubling Silence on the Dakota Access Pipeline
Patrick Cockburn
Aleppo vs. Mosul: Media Biases